Thursday, November 29, 2007

My Son!

I had never been a football fan in my life. Paul had played in high school, but never watched it once he got older. But for some reason, our son, Robert, developed a sudden interest in it two years ago. So when he started Catholic high school this year, one of the first things he did was to join the football team. I finally began to learn about the game for the first time in my life. Once I understood a little bit, I actually found it exciting. It was also much more interesting when there was a player I knew personally to watch. Robert had a good season and enjoyed every minute. One of the other player's parents took this photo. We were glad to have this momento!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Orderly Days

As promised, I am going to share my new home management binder, Orderly Days by Motherhood Press (Update 10/13/08: Sadly, the website seems to be down right now. I don't know why or when it might return.) I am the type of person that really needs a schedule, yet I tend to balk against one. This, in spite of the fact that if I have a to-do list, I get tons more done than without one. So, I am giving this a try. I wanted to have everything in one place: calendar, to-do lists, chore schedules, grocery lists, menus, phone and address pages, etc. This binder has several sections with these types of features, tabbed for easy location.

I also wanted to "tweak" my binder to make it more useful to me personally. So I bought some extra forms that fit this size binder. (I bought Day Runner fillers, but any brand of the correct size would do.) I like to have a full-length, daily check list for appointments and to-do's, so I got daily pages for that. All I do is fill in the date and whatever needs to be done. I also got extra name and address forms. I also wanted a plastic pencil holder for pens, dry erase markers, and index tabs. Finally I also wanted plastic protector sheets so I could put the daily chore lists in them and cross off the tasks with the dry erase markers each day, then erase to be ready for the next. I ended up needing to temporarily remove some of the Orderly Days forms for the future (I took out about 6 months worth, which will be put back in once I've used up the other ones) in order to make room for these additions.

I'm not done getting it right yet! I still have to write up and print my daily chore lists to be put in the plastic protectors. And I haven't filled out the name and address section yet. But all in time (which I hope to have more of now that I am getting oganized!). So far, I have been much better about getting my tasks (both work and play) done. This system also helps me keep on track with regular prayer time.

Here are a few pictures, showing some of the features and my "tweaks":
Pencil holders for pens, markers, and index tabs

Weekly organizational page, plus the Day Runner "Today" page

The weekly goals list, stressing spiritual growth as well as family and personal needs

The binder, closed up and ready for tomorrow!

Tea and Movies

Once a month or so, I hostess a "Movie Night" for my friends who love tea and old movies. We watch costume dramas (movies like Sense & Sensibility and Little Women) and the old black and white films (such as The Heiress and Laura). I serve the tea buffet style. We usually have our savories and first cup of tea prior to starting the movie, then take a break in the middle for our sweets and fresh tea. Of course, everyone is free to replenish their plates and cups at any point throughout the movie! I always use my good china, because I hate the thought of that lovely wedding china only being used a few times a year for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter. And it makes for a lovely table setting. The flowers are silk, made at a past tea event I had where we learned how to make Tussie-Mussies.

Here is my most recent table setting before we all dug in:

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Kitchen Drawer Reorganization

In my small-space kitchen, drawer space is at a premium. So I was very unhappy with an overloaded, inefficient drawer where I kept the majority of my kitchen tools. For some reason on Thanksgiving I got this strange motivation to clean and reorganize it. I guess the thought of all the cooking I was going to do made me want to not be rummaging and hunting for things. So I emptied it out completely, thoroughly washed it, purged unnecessary items (and there were tons of 'em), moved others, and sorted. The main improvement however, was the simple rotation of my drawer divider 90 degrees to the right. It made things fit better, and they are much easier to see. If I had been thinking, I would have taken a "before" picture!

Well, here it is, and it was and has been a joy to work with ever since I straightened it out:

Friday, November 9, 2007

Back Again

Hello! I have been missing due to time constraints and health issues (nothing serious!). I will probably do a blog marathon with photos soon. I have received my planner and have "tweaked" it with some added pages from Day Runner, so it is becoming exactly as I want it. Stay tuned!